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Alan Shatter is suing the Irish Times

It is the second time he has launched legal proceedings against the publication in the past six months.

Image: Leah Farrell/Rollingnews.ie

FORMER MINISTER FOR Justice Alan Shatter is suing the Irish Times.

In a filing on Wednesday, the former Fine Gael TD initiated High Court proceedings against the paper for the second time in around six months.

Shatter had previously launched legal proceedings against the same publication on 22 December 2017, but the case has not yet been heard in the High Court.

He resigned as minister in 2014 after the findings of the Guerin Report. That report focused on Shatter’s handling of complaints made by Garda whistleblower Sergeant Maurice McCabe.

It was prepared for the government by barrister Sean Guerin after a number of allegations were made about policing in the Cavan/Monaghan area. The report was critical of Shatter’s actions, and he resigned in the wake of its publication.

The subsequent O’Higgins Commission of Investigation, however, which also looked into the same matters found Shatter had dealt with the concerns appropriately.

Appearing at the Disclosures Tribunal last week, the former minister had this description for the aftermath of his resignation: “I think I was traumatised by the circumstances, unexpected as they were, that had occurred. I was expecting to be vindicated, not condemned by Mr Guerin.”

After Shatter won an appeal over a failed challenge to the Guerin Report, the document was removed from the Department of An Taoiseach’s website.

He was also successful last year in a High Court case against the Data Protection Commissioner.

He was alleged to have been in breach of his duties under data protection legislation by mentioning his understanding that TD Mick Wallace had been cautioned by gardaí for allegedly using a mobile phone when driving.

Shatter himself said at the time that he “welcomed” the judgement.

When approached by TheJournal.ie over this matter, Shatter said he had no comment to make. TheJournal.ie also contacted the Irish Times for comment.

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Sean Murray

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